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Pakistan imports potatoes from India

Last updated: 17 August, 2010
Islamabad, Aug 17 (IANS): 18:13 IST

Pakistan has started importing potatoes from India after floods in the country destroyed the crops, raising fears of acute shortage of the vegetable in the coming days, Xinhua reported Tuesday.

The first consignment of about 25 trucks arrived at the Wagah border checkpoint in the Punjab province Monday.

Potato prices have already soared in wholesale and retail markets. The import is likely to help stabilize the prices. Potatoes have a longer shelf life than other vegetrables, and form a main ingredient in many subcontinental dishes.
Prices of other vegetables also surged due to flooding in major vegetable producing areas of Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan provinces. Spinach and bitter gourd prices surged by 200 to 300 percent.

"Potatoes are being imported from India to curb rising prices. First consignment reached the country Monday and more will come during the current week," said Haji Shahjahn, president of Wholesale Vegetable Welfare Association.
The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province is a major potato growing region, mainly the red variety, during July and August.

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